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My Fashion Day: An Outsider’s Partial View “Inside” Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week!

16 Sep Badgley Mischka Spring 2014

Mercedes-Benz Fashioin Week

DKNY – Fall 2013

To say I got a view inside might be…a bit misleading. What I actually got was a partial peek into its exclusive enclave on day four of the mega eight-day (Sept. 5-12, 2013),  bi-annual Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week!  In addition to the trek further uptown, the fashion show of shows has amazingly transformed its relatively new digs at the world-renowned Lincoln Center cultural arts venue. Tents had to be pitched to house the runway shows in the more humble, smaller scaled Bryant Park locale that formerly served as its longtime home in Midtown Manhattan.

My way “in” to the swanky set-up for the fashion forward crowd viewing the Spring 2014 collections of top designers, was by sheer luck. A well-connected associate/friend simply asked “would you like to go in? I have a pass.” To which I anxiously replied to his question with the question: “Can I?” And just like that I was inside Fashion Week for a day! Well, for a couple of hours, anyway, I was among the well attired in their fashionable best on a sunny, Sunday afternoon.

Although I wasn’t fully prepared to mix ‘n’ mingle with “the beautiful people,” the slender statuesque females and meticulously tailored male attendees, whom I of course, naively mistook for models. What else? But I was dully informed by wardrobe stylist Pia Malastesta, whom I briefly chatted up—that many or most of those in attendance—were either fashion editors, bloggers, buyers, photographers, fellow stylists or in some way connected to the business side of the industry. So, after slowly surveying the surroundings, I partook of the unlimited complimentary branded “Little Pink Dress” cocktails being served up in wide rimmed, pink glasses; tried the Lifeway frozen natural fruit popsicles conveniently available for the taking in a glass slide top freezer, and the endless supply of Smart water in bins strategically placed throughout the room. My friend joined the group over at the Samsung Galaxy booth to get his mobile phone cover customized. Yes, for free!

Although it might not sound too glamorous being on the sidelines outside, since it’s not exactly the front lines—as in getting past the gatekeepers to the viewing rooms where you could see the real action going on: the designers showing their lines. But it was good enough, especially when the only way in is to be somebody, know somebody or to be invited by somebody. I guess my friend fit the latter two; he got in! The closest the rest of “us” ever get to upscale “fashion” are those televised celebrity red carpet arrivals to A-list Hollywood events, where the question posed is always: “Who are you wearing?” Not what’re you wearing?

Nevertheless, I, along with others like me swarming about the lobby and exhibition areas just happy to be at the popular fashion event, made the most of it. I watched several of the shows being aired on flat panel screens mounted around the elaborately decorated space and worked the room as best I could on an impromptu invitation. There were others there too, unlike myself, who wanted to be seen and maybe photographed. And a lot of them were.

The line out front resembled the ones outside exclusive nightclubs where only suitably dressed patrons are handpicked and allowed beyond the velvet rope, and the rest are left behind. There were a few who noticeably didn’t quite make the cut. I even saw a woman wearing a pair of the same casual low-heeled boots I have, and thought “I would’ve never worn those to Fashion Week.” I don’t know if Pia would agree, however she does believe it’s all about the shoes! You can judge for yourselves. Check out her coverage at: piaslastlooks.blogspot.com.

Oh, there was a missed Paris Hilton sighting on my part; I didn’t see her traipsing by because I was over at the cocktail bar. And then there was a near Kanye West sighting, which it turned out was only a Kanye look-a-like. I did get an upclose view of Rachel Zoe outside, though, giving regular folks the thrill of being photographed with a real reality fashion star.

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